Thursday, April 29, 2010

The Raven Is Back!

It's good to be back on the blog. As many of you know, we were away in California, visiting my mother-in-law who we thought was dying. When we got there, she did look terrible, not eating, sleeping, and having jerking movements from time to time, speaking irrationally on occasion. For two days we were all very sullen, expecting the worse. Then miraculously the third day she wakes up and says, "I'm hungry, where are we going for breakfast." After we picked ourselves up off the floor happily, we all ate a hearty breakfast, she of course ate more than us. She continues to get better as I write.
While in California, we didn't do much except cook, read, and spend time with the family. Joyce, Russell's sister wanted to watch a movie one night and we decided upon "Chocolat" I love that movie. So to put ourselves in the mood, I thought it would be great to make hot chocolate the way it was made in the movie, and sip it ever so romantically, as we eagerly watch the movie.
So-be-it, I anxiously looked on line for the receipe. I found it. It's called "Mayan Hot Chocloate. " The drink is as close as can be with the modern ingredients to the Mayan drink from the movie. It will cure anything from PMS to heart disease to a broken heart, so they say. Why don't you rent the movie and try it yourself. It's wonderful. Here's the recipe.

Mayan Hot Chocolate

1 chile pepper, cut in half, seeds removed

5 cups light cream, or whole milk or nonfat milk

1 vanilla bean, split lenghtwise

1 to 2 cinnamon sticks

8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, or 3 tablets

Mexican chocolate, cut into 2-inch pieces

2 tablespoons granulated sugar or honey or to taste

1 tablespoon almonds or hazelnuts, ground extra fine

Add chile pepper to 2 cups boiling water. Cook until liquid is reduced to 1 cup. Remove chile pepper; strain for stray seeds, and set aside.

In a medium-size saucepan, combine cream or milk, vanilla bean(vanilla bean should be split in half length wise and the tiny seeds scraped out) and cinnamon stick. Heat over medium flame until bubbles appear around the edge. Reduce heat to low; add chocolate and sugar or honey; whisk occasionally until chocolate is melted and sugar dissolves.

Turn off heat; remove vanilla bean and cinnamon stick, stir in ground almonds or hazelnuts. Add chile pepper infusion a little at a time making sure the flavor isn't too strong. If chocolate is too thick, thin with a little more milk. Enjoy!
I had to go on a search in the supermaket for all the ingredients. It was at that time I discovered the tremendously expensive cost of vanilla beans. Did you know they were so expensive? Why are vanilla beans so expensive? For just two bean pods it can range from $12-15 dollars. And so my dear friends as the crow flies, I found out why. That will be the subject of my next blog.
This blog has been especially written for "The Crow", or affectionately known as "Old Crow" Now you must keep up with the blog Crow, cause The Raven is back!!!

This is Raven-as the crow flies


  1. The old crow won't read more that 2 paragraphs.. so shorten the blogging also any reciepe listed needs first to be tested.. you may send the real thing at anytime... O C

  2. Hi crow- This recipe was tested and wonderfully delicious. You must try it.

  3. Hi crow,

    Now I understand what you meant about testing this recipe. Sometimes you have to hit me over the head to get it.

    I'd be happy to make this special hot chocolate. We should wait for a cool, brisk autumn night, perhaps even watch the movie together with all our blogging friends, and feel like we are in heaven, I mean paradise for us.

    Believe it or not the fall is only 4 months and three weeks away.